Re: Reasonable to propose stability policy on numeric type = decimal

From: CE Whitehead (
Date: Sun Jul 25 2010 - 21:45:10 CDT

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    > From: karl williamson (
    > Date: Sun Jul 25 2010 - 17:00:14 CDT
    > . . .
    >> From:
    >> Date: Sun, 25 Jul 2010 16:24:01 -0400
    >> > . . .
    >> > Date: Sun, 25 Jul 2010 10:43:11 -0600
    >> > From:
    >> >
    > . . .
    >> >
    >> > Prudence would dictate, then, that when assigning code points to the
    >> > numbers in a script, that a contiguous block of 12-13 be reserved for
    >> > them, such that the first one in the block be set aside for ZERO; the
    >> > next for ONE, etc.
    >> >
    >> > My original question comes down to then, would it be reasonable to
    >> > codify this prudence? People have said it will never happen. But no
    >> > one has said why that is.
    >> >
    >> > Obviously, things can happen that will mess this up--the Phaistos disk
    >> > could turn out to be a base-46 numbering system, as an extremely
    >> > unlikely example. But by dictating prudence now, most such eventualities
    >> > wouldn't happen.
    >> >
    >> > I have since looked at the Nt=Di characters. The ones that aren't in
    >> > contiguous runs are the superscripts and ones that would never be
    >> > considered to be decimal digits, such as a circled ZERO.
    >> Hi
    >> Are you proposing that superscripts be in contiguous runs or not?

    > I was not proposing that. Just the codification of what existing
    > practice has been for Numeric_Type=Decimal_Digit. Superscripts are of
    > Numeric_Type=Digit; the two names are too similar, and cause confusion.
    O.k. that's clear enough now.
    I tend to feel however that Asmus has brought up a reasonable objection
    -- although in cases other than when some alphabetic characters are reused as numeric ones,
    this might be at least a non-harmful policy to have (meaning I cannot think of an objection myself right at this moment).

    > I know of no general purpose programming language that figures out math
    > equations with superscripts.
    > If you want exponentiation, you have to
    > specify an exponentiation operator.

    > Above
    >> you disallowed subscripts (although
    >> I think mathematically subscripts have some meaning in equations as do
    >> superscripts and it might worth converting them albeit separately from
    >> other numbers; if these were converted it would allow complete equations
    >> to be converted from character strings -- but with only digits 1-9 I do
    >> not see that much of an issue; I'd personally like to find a subscript
    >> i; but so far I've just looked at:
    >> where the subscripts 0-9 are all
    >> contiguous but the superscript 1, 2, and 3 are not; searching through
    >> that was all I found;
    >> I then started going through code charts one by one and so far have
    >> gotten as far as Old South Arabian and have not found superscript i or
    >> more superscript decimal numbers though maybe I've missed something --
    >> the Arabic sukun is not going to be part of a series of superscripts in
    >> any case).
    Sorry again. Subscript i is encoded; I missed it; indeed there are a a number of subscript characters currently encoded.
    What I found were:
    subscript lower case letters: a; e; o; x; schwa; j; i; r; u; v (still looking for more);
    also Greek letters betta; gamma; rho; chi; phi (still looking for alpha and delta but of course maybe I do not know where to search yet).
    (But this is another thread entirely.)
    C. E. Whitehead

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